Throughout history, people have used the Bible to create religion. The very book that was meant to bring people to God ended up being used to create rules and regulations that can actually keep us from Him! Jesus had a harsh word for the Jews who studied the Scriptures for its own sake and as a proof of their own religion:
“You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me, yet you refuse to come to me to have life” (John 5:39,40).
The Scriptures are God’s communication to us, revealing who He is, who we are, and how we can join Him in His life-transforming purposes. When we consider the resources available for us to pursue God and fulfill our internal longing to know Him, apart from the indwelling Holy Spirit, there is no resource greater than His communication to us in the Bible.
The Bible is unlike any other book. The biblical writers, and Jesus Christ Himself, saw the Scriptures as authoritative and alive. For that reason, we read, study, and meditate on the Bible because it is the Word of God.
I’ll never forget when as a college student I was asked to lead a meeting with a group of friends who were leaders in a student ministry on our campus. I was petrified. A couple of days before our meeting, I remember crying out to God. I prayed, listened, and began to write down Scripture passages that spoke to what our group needed. As God reminded me of those passages, my fears and anxiety began to cease and I knew I could depend on Him and His Word to be my resource for that leadership role. The power and authority of God’s Word overshadowed my weaknesses and we all sensed that God had met us.